Cold Spring School Board of Trustees

MediaLibrary#315Daniel Biemesderfer, President, joined the Board of Trustees in 1996 and has served as President since 2000. Dan has also held the position of Secretary, chaired the Committee on Trustees, served as co-chair for the Search Committee that recruited former Director, Jeff Jonathan and served on the Search Committee that hired Cold Spring's current Director, Arati Pandit. Dan is recently retired from Yale University where he was a bio medical researcher and Associate Professor of Internal Medicine at the School of Medicine. Dan and his wife, Gretchen are the parents of two graduates, Alex and Zachary, and grandparents of a current student, Mallory, and two alumnae, Sophia and Olivia. Dan believes the way young children are taught is fundamental to their futures and supports this belief through his work as a Trustee.

Shel Swanson, Co-Vice President, MediaLibrary#572joined the Board in 2011. She is a nurse-midwife and exercise physiologist who most recently worked for Planned Parenthood. She is passionate about urban farming, yoga and collaborative community endeavors in and around New Haven. Shel is mom to Sabra, a college student, Nate, who graduated from CSS in 2013, and Isa Ruby, a current student. She was drawn to Cold Spring’s emphasis on the social curriculum, student diversity and the School's strong sense of community.

MediaLibrary#317David Thompson, Co-Vice President, has been a Trustee since 1997, and also serves on the Building Committee. He is an architect and Principal of David Thompson Architects in New Haven, a design firm focusing on educational, religious, and residential work. David has served on various building and planning committees since 1996. He and his wife have lived and worked in New Haven for more than 30 years, where they have been involved in numerous community activities. The exposure to opportunities for community involvement was important to them and factored into their choice of Cold Spring for their daughters, Micha and Nora, who graduated in 2003 and 2005.

MediaLibrary#323Lisa Marcus, Secretary, joined the Board of Trustees in 1993. She has chaired the Admissions Committee and is currently serving as Secretary of the Board’s Executive Committee. Lisa's children, Sara and Katie, graduated from Cold Spring School in 2000 and 2003. Sara is a doctoral student in clinical psychology at The New School for Social Research and Katie is a medical student at Johns Hopkins University. Lisa is a clinical psychologist in private practice and lives in Guilford with her husband. Lisa says she chose Cold Spring School as much for herself as for her children because, "it is a place where individuals are truly supported to become the best versions of themselves; a mission I feel committed to support." 

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Michael Deakin, Treasurer, joined the Board in 2007. He is an attorney and partner in the law firm Deakin, Edwards and Clark, LLP and an adjunct professor at Western Connecticut State University. Michael’s practice focuses on civil litigation in such areas as civil rights, product liability and insurance law. Michael  remembers “being struck by the sense of community during a visit to Cold Spring School during Wednesday morning school meeting. To see students, parents and staff so engaged was impressive and inspiring. I knew at that point Cold Spring School was the place for my son, James," who graduated in 2011, and is a student at Choate Rosemary Hall.

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J Bunton joined the Board of Trustees in 2004 and serves on the Building Committee. J is an architect who worked with Cesar Pelli & Associates for 15 years before opening his own firm, Apicella & Bunton Architects. J and his wife Linda, a former member of the Admissions Committee, have twin sons, Will and Tyler, who graduated from Cold Spring in 2010 and attend Hamden Hall Country Day School. “We knew Cold Spring School was a perfect fit for our family the moment we visited the school and met the teachers,” J said. “It is exactly the kind of education I wish I had when I was a kid!”

MediaLibrary#316David Cross has been a CSS Trustee since 1996 and serves on the Admissions Committee. He taught elementary school in his twenties and has worked as a program evaluator and policy analyst since 1983. David sells musical instrument kits to schools across the country through his business Backyard Music. He is a parent of two graduates who remember their Cold Spring years “fondly and thankfully.” David’s commitment to  Cold Spring stems from a personal desire to “give back the gifts of support and acceptance I received as a child attending a wonderful camp on a small farm in the Berkshires." 

MediaLibrary#823Raimund Herzog joined the board in 2012. Raimund is an Endocrinologist and Assistant Professor of Medicine at the Yale School of Medicine, where he studies brain metabolism in diabetes. Raimund is an avid woodworker and can be frequently seen at CSS performing odd jobs with his drill or screwdriver. He and his wife, Erica have three children. Raimund and Erica value the CSS approach to education as one that embraces thinking and creativity and emphasizes diversity and mutual respect, with the goal of helping their children become productive and curious members of society in a rapidly changing world.

MediaLibrary#321Jocelyn Hurwitz joined the Board in 2003 and serves as Chair of the Personnel Committee. She is an attorney and shareholder in Cohen and Wolf, PC in Bridgeport. Jocelyn and her husband, Scott, have two sons, Max, who graduated in 2008, and Adam who graduated in 2011. When reflecting on her children’s Cold Spring experience, Jocelyn says  “I feel confident my children are able to think in a way that will prepare them well for any kind of academic or life challenge their futures may bring.”

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Connie M. Razza joined the Board in 2016. She is the Director of Campaigns at the Center for Popular Democracy, which is a federated national network of high-impact community organizations campaigning for economic and racial justice, immigrant rights, voting rights, and climate justice. Connie has two children at Cold Spring School. "We selected CSS because we saw it as a community that would inspire creativity, curiosity, and a love of learning," says Connie. "And we are very pleased with the choice. Our expectations have been surpassed."


MediaLibrary#1409Michael Sloan joined the Board in 2014. He is an artist and illustrator whose work has been published by many national magazines and newspapers. He and his family recently spent a year living and working in Hong Kong. Michael says, "Our experience living abroad reminded us how important our community is to us here in New Haven. There were many things we missed while away and Cold Spring was at the top of our list." Michael and his wife, Leslie have three children.